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  1. #1
    mrmvp is offline Member
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    out of or out

    When I trnslate a text, I am puzzled by "out of "or "out" Is there a rule to know when to use "the" with out and when not?

    For example , he came out of the blue or he came out of the blue?


    Thank you.
    Last edited by mrmvp; 31-Aug-2017 at 06:13.

  2. #2
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    tzfujimino is offline Key Member
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    Re: out of or out

    Hello, mrmvp.
    In your example, "out of the blue" is an idiom meaning "unexpectedly" or "without warning". You can't omit "the" ー it's a set phrase.
    However, it's possible to use "out of a blue" in a sentence like "She came out of a blue sedan/car."

    I hope my response will be of some help to you.

  3. #3
    mrmvp is offline Member
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    Re: out of or out

    Thank you so much.

    I know what the idiom means.However, what is the difference between a set phrase and an idiom?

    Is there a rule to know when to use "the" with out and when not?

    Thank you.

  4. #4
    tzfujimino's Avatar
    tzfujimino is offline Key Member
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    Re: out of or out

    Quote Originally Posted by mrmvp View Post
    However, what is the difference between a set phrase and an idiom?

    Is there a rule to know when to use "the" with out and when not?
    By a "set phrase", I mean you can't make any alterations to it ー you can't say "He came out of blue." or "He came out the blue."

    I don't quite understand your second question. Could you give us some example sentences to illustrate what you're confused about?

  5. #5
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    Re: out of or out

    Quote Originally Posted by mrmvp View Post
    For example , he came out of the blue or he came out of the blue?
    There's no difference between "he came out of the blue" and "he came out of the blue". They are identical.
    It's difficult to guess what you're asking about. Your title suggests it's a question about "out" and "out of", but you tell us that it's about "the". Could you possibly ask again?

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